It's been a long few years since the Oculus Rift's Kickstarter took $2.4 million in funding, becoming a "real thing" on the first step towards this latest wave of virtual reality enthusiasm. But we've yet to see a consumer release date announced and, according to inventor Palmer Luckey at a SXSW 2015 panel, that's unlikely to come any time soon — possibly not even before the end of this year.
"I did say that before we made a lot of changes to our roadmap and we've expanded a lot of the ambition we had around the product and what we wanted to do," said Luckey of the initial 2015 launch window, according to a Gamespot report.
"Us partnering with Facebook allowed us a lot of things that we wouldn't have been able to do otherwise like hire 300 people to be working on getting the Rift out as quickly as possible at the level we want it.
However, Palmer doesn't see a possible delay as a cause for concern. In fact, he seems incredibly positive about the headset's development:
"I can't comment on the date one way or another in either direction but I can say that nothing is going horribly wrong. Everything is going horribly right."
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Despite competition from the HTC Vive and Sony PlayStation's Morpheus, Luckey believes the Rift will remain the best of all VR headsets at its launch.
"I do still think that it will be [the best VR headset at any price]," he said. "That could change because that means that there's something even better out there, but I think that's unlikely right now."
That may be the case, but the best headset in the world, relegated to a testing lab, will mean little when rivals hit shelves. With Morpheus now announced for an early 2016 launch, Oculus will have to start getting some concrete information out there before it loses its early lead. Oculus will argue that the Gear VR headset, built in partnership with Samsung, will fill the gap when it commercially launches shortly. But for those with dreams of exploring a VR Skyrim or City 17, the mobile-powered stepping stone won't be enough. [Gamespot]
This post originally appeared on Gizmodo UK, which is gobbling up the news in a different timezone.